2nd Facility Turns Down Brain-Dead Teen at 11th Hour
Children's Hospital Oakland confirms it will unplug her at 5pm
By Kate Seamons, Newser Staff
Posted Dec 30, 2013 5:37 AM CST
Updated Dec 30, 2013 7:08 AM CST
This undated file photo provided by the McMath family and Omari Sealey shows Jahi McMath.   (AP Photo/Courtesy of McMath Family and Omari Sealey, File)

(Newser) – The clock is ticking for Jahi McMath, with Children's Hospital Oakland yesterday confirming it will shut off her ventilator at 5pm today unless ordered otherwise, reports the San Francisco Chronicle. Her family continues to scramble to find a facility willing to take the brain-dead 13-year-old, after yesterday learning that the Los Angeles-area option they were banking on backed out (this after the first facility changed its mind amid a crush of press), reports the San Jose Mercury News. Jahi's lawyer says there's one "last, last hope": an unnamed New York hospital.

But the Mercury News indicates things may not have progressed very far on the New York front, with Children's Hospital yesterday saying that "our physicians have yet to receive a single call or message from the facility under consideration ... to discuss with our medical staff what may be necessary to transfer the deceased." The hospital's lawyer noted that it would not release Jahi without a "lawful transportation plan" and written consent from the coroner to send her body out of state. And then there's the question of a needed tracheotomy. As for why the Southern California long-term care facility rescinded its offer, Jahi's lawyer says it was fearful of media attention and a backlash from its doctors, who didn't want to treat a person confirmed to be brain-dead. Click for more on Jahi's case.

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Showing 3 of 38 comments
Dec 30, 2013 6:16 PM CST
For all that is good, let this child die, and rest in peace. The family appears to be basking in the circus they have created.
Dec 30, 2013 3:09 PM CST
"An individual who has been given this diagnosis is a corpse, not a patient," reads an article written in Community Ethics by Lance Stell, chief of medical ethics at the Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, North Carolina. "If it is ever appropriate for a physician to order treatment stopped unilaterally on grounds of futility, irrespective of what families or roving strangers may wish, this is it." A study published in Neurology in 1998 found that a boy diagnosed as brain dead at 4 years old had been living at home for 12 years. His mother sent the researchers a picture of him wearing a bathing suit floating on a raft in their pool. "It's a new class of dead people that's unusual," Youngner said. http://www.wired.com/science/discoveries/news/2001/04/42847?currentPage=all
Dec 30, 2013 10:59 AM CST
I feel extremely bad for this family's loss, but they need to come to terms with the reality of the situation. Such a horrible state of denial they are obviously in. My heart goes out to them.